Walking east on N Street SE, we cross the alley that leads into the future left field and find this fine Victorian rowhouse.
According to a recent Washington Post article, the house has been lovingly restored by a retired air force sergeant who moved in during the late 1990s. Its original stoop was likely wrought iron painted black. Perhaps the kitchen was even in the basement. Originally this house was the home of the Richards family , who ran a nearby sand, gravel, and brick yard during the late nineteenth century.
It would be an exaggeration to say that this house and its four neighbors at the corner of Van Street SE are architecturally unique. However, they are among the very few remenants of the type of blue collar neighborhood that is increasingly rare in the city.
If the stadium is indeed to be built, perhaps a way can be found to integrate these houses into the design, much in the way that the B&O Warehouse lends an aura of tradition and continuity to Oriole Park at Camden Yard.
OCTOBER, 2006: After a protracted and well-publicized struggle, the former Richards home was demolished. Its site will become part of the same development as the N and Van Streets row.
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